– JOCKEY DIEGO SAENZ TALLIES FOUR STAKES WINS ON RICH NIGHT OF RACING –
VINTON, LA. – Delta Downs hosted its richest program of the season on Saturday night with another edition of Louisiana Premier Night. The 12-race card featured 10 stakes races for Louisiana-bred horses and nearly $1 million in total purse money up for grabs.
The featured event of the night was the $150,000 Louisiana Premier Night Championship for older horses competing at 1-1/16 miles. The race was won by Grand Luwegee with jockey Diego Saenz in the saddle for owner, breeder and trainer Gerard Perron. The win was the third of four victories on the night for Saenz.
After the race, Perron praised Saenz for a special talent he used to help Grand Luwegee get to the winner’s circle following his first stakes win.
“Diego’s got the hands that this horse needs,” Perron stated. “He’s proven it each time he’s ridden him.”
Perron also explained how Grand Luwegee got his unique name.
“I let my grandsons name my horses and Bryce, who is six, came up with the name.”
Grand Luwegee’s win came with a front-running, rail skimming trip after he broke alertly from the inside post position in a field of 10. The 4-year-old carved our fractional times of 23.91 seconds for the opening quarter-mile, 48.33 for the half, and 1:13.30 for three-quarters. At the top of the lane he owned a three-length lead before turning back a late challenge by Givemeaminit and won by a neck on the finish line. Mageez finished another 3 ¾-lengths behind in third.
The final time for the Championship was 1:45.80 over a fast track.
Grand Luwegee has now won five of 13 career starts and his $90,000 paycheck on Saturday raised his overall bankroll to $235,360.
Bred in Louisiana, Grand Luwegee is a dark bay or brown colt by El Corredor, out of the Gold Fever mare Magical Mia.
Sent to the gate at odds of 11-1, Grand Luwegee paid $24.20 to win, $10 to place and $6.40 to show. Givemeaminit returned $4 to place and $3 to show. Mageez was worth $7.20 to show.
In other action on Louisiana Premier Night it was Hyper Piper winning the $125,000 Distaff under jockey Tim Thornton. The grey 6-year-old is trained by Sam B. David, Jr. and is owned by Earl J. Hernandez, Keith Hernandez and John Duvieilh.
This year’s $100,000 Sprint was taken by Wonder Run, who was guided to victory by jockey Diego Saenz, Wonder Run is a 6-year-old gelding who is trained by Steven Flint and is owned by Whispering Oak Farm, LLC.
James McIngvale’s 3-year-old Goodprofit proved best in this year’s $100,000 Starlet while being ridden by Gerard Melancon. The 3-year-old bay runner is trained by Chris Richard.
A strong rally in the stretch got Shang to the winner’s circle in the $100,000 Prince with jockey Diego Saenz aboard. Shang is owned by Corinne and William Heiligbrodt and is conditioned by Hall of Fame trainer Steve Asmussen.
Ours to Run won her second straight $100,000 Matron this year as she turned in a strong performance under jockey Roberto Morales. The winner is owned by Colonel Thoroughbreds LLC and is trained by Larry Jones.
Galaxy Thirtysix gave Delta Downs leading trainer Karl Broberg a win on the program in the $60,000 Ladies Starter, as she drew clear in the lane under jockey Tim Thornton. Galaxy Thirtysix is owned by End Zone Athletics, Inc.
Jockey Kerwin Clark rode a masterful race in the $60,000 Gentlemen Starter to earn the victory aboard Just Stormin. The Allen Landry trainee is owned by Craig Drago.
In the $50,000 Bon Temps Starter it was Toomuch getting the victory with Diego Saenz in the saddle. Toomuch is owned by Darque Horse Racing, LLC and is trained by Eduardo Ramirez.
And finally, Hunker Down took the $50,000 Ragin Cajun Starter with jockey Adam Beschizza aboard for trainer Ron Faucheux, who owns the 6-year-old gelding in partnership with Ming Yan Ng.
Delta Downs will embark on its 18th week of live racing Wednesday night with a 10-race program that kicks off at 5:25 pm. The current season runs through March 9.
For more information about racing at Delta Downs visit the track’s website at www.deltadownsracing.com. Fans can also get information about through Facebook by visiting the page ‘Delta Downs Racing’. The track’s Twitter handle is @deltaracing.
Delta Downs Racetrack Casino and Hotel, a property of Boyd Gaming Corporation (NYSE:BYD), features exciting casino action, live horse racing and fun dining experiences. Delta Downs is located in Vinton, Louisiana, on Delta Downs Drive. From Lake Charles, take Exit 7 and from Texas, take Exit 4.